Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

'Real ID' Act Could Help ID Thieves

Filed under
Security

Security experts have expressed dismay about new legislation that will usher in the nation's first national ID system-citing a lack of confidence in the government's ability to employ the technology in such a way as to prevent citizens from being preyed upon by identity thieves.

The Real ID Act of 2005, added on to the $82 billion Emergency Supplemental Appropriations bill, was passed by the House of Representatives on Thursday and is expected to be passed by the Senate next week.

The act was pushed through without hearings or deliberation, over the objections of a coalition of 12 Democratic senators who decried it as a sweeping anti-immigration bill.

Beyond issues of civil liberties, what's disturbing about the imminent passage of the Real ID Act from a technological point of view is that it's being done in spite of the growing popularity of state RMVs (Registries of Motor Vehicles) as targets for identity thieves, experts say.

"My feeling is there's a tremendous amount of activity going on right now around data theft," said Jon Oltsik, an analyst with Enterprise Strategies Group. "The stuff we hear about in the news is dwarfed by the stuff we don't hear about, because people bury it, because they don't want to disclose it. They're praying nothing happens."

The bill dictates that all states collect, at a minimum, personal information from citizens in order to obtain a driver's license, including name, date of birth, gender, driver's license or identification card number, digital photograph, address and signature.

Whereas collection of this particular information is not new, the linkage of states' databases is. The bill specifies that states link what are at present discrete databases, creating, in effect, one nationwide database with personal information pertaining to all citizens.

Even with states' currently discrete, disconnected databases, thieves increasingly have turned their attention to RMVs.

In March, thieves rammed a car through the back wall of a DMV near Las Vegas and stole computer equipment containing personal information on more than 8,900 people. Police in the past month have arrested DMV examiners in Florida and Maryland for selling fake driver's licenses.

Meanwhile, personal information for thousands of Americans has been compromised through the recent rash of scandals around what were considered secure databases residing with data brokers ChoicePoint and Lexis Nexis.

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

Android Leftovers

Baidu puts open source deep learning into smartphones

A year after it open sourced its PaddlePaddle deep learning suite, Baidu has dropped another piece of AI tech into the public domain – a project to put AI on smartphones. Mobile Deep Learning (MDL) landed at GitHub under the MIT license a day ago, along with the exhortation “Be all eagerness to see it”. MDL is a convolution-based neural network designed to fit on a mobile device. Baidu said it is suitable for applications such as recognising objects in an image using a smartphone's camera. Read more

AMD and Linux Kernel

  • Ataribox runs Linux on AMD chip and will cost at least $250
    Atari released more details about its Ataribox game console today, disclosing for the first time that the machine will run Linux on an Advanced Micro Devices processor and cost $250 to $300. In an exclusive interview last week with GamesBeat, Ataribox creator and general manager Feargal Mac (short for Mac Conuladh) said Atari will begin a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo this fall and launch the Ataribox in the spring of 2018. The Ataribox will launch with a large back catalog of the publisher’s classic games. The idea is to create a box that makes people feel nostalgic about the past, but it’s also capable of running the independent games they want to play today, like Minecraft or Terraria.
  • Linux 4.14 + ROCm Might End Up Working Out For Kaveri & Carrizo APUs
    It looks like the upstream Linux 4.14 kernel may end up playing nicely with the ROCm OpenCL compute stack, if you are on a Kaveri or Carrizo system. While ROCm is promising as AMD's open-source compute stack complete with OpenCL 1.2+ support, its downside is that for now not all of the necessary changes to the Linux kernel drivers, LLVM Clang compiler infrastructure, and other components are yet living in their upstream repositories. So for now it can be a bit hairy to setup ROCm compute on your own system, especially if running a distribution without official ROCm packages. AMD developers are working to get all their changes upstreamed in each of the respective sources, but it's not something that will happen overnight and given the nature of Linux kernel development, etc, is something that will still take months longer to complete.
  • Latest Linux kernel release candidate was a sticky mess
    Linus Torvalds is not noted as having the most even of tempers, but after a weekend spent scuba diving a glitch in the latest Linux kernel release candidate saw the Linux overlord merely label the mess "nasty". The release cycle was following its usual cadence when Torvalds announced Linux 4.14 release candidate 2, just after 5:00PM on Sunday, September 24th.
  • Linus Torvalds Announces the Second Release Candidate of Linux Kernel 4.14 LTS
    Development of the Linux 4.14 kernel series continues with the second Release Candidate (RC) milestone, which Linus Torvalds himself announces this past weekend. The update brings more updated drivers and various improvements. Linus Torvalds kicked off the development of Linux kernel 4.14 last week when he announced the first Release Candidate, and now the second RC is available packed full of goodies. These include updated networking, GPU, and RDMA drivers, improvements to the x86, ARM, PowerPC, PA-RISC, MIPS, and s390 hardware architectures, various core networking, filesystem, and documentation changes.

Red Hat: ‘Hybrid Cloud’, University of Alabama, Red Hat Upgrades Ansible and Expectations